Address during the release of documentary My Flag My Life 07/Aug/2009 : Pune Courage Stimulates Civilizational Growth "When

you wish upon a star, Makes no difference who you are Anything your heart desires Will come to you� I am indeed delighted to address and interact with the Students and NDA cadets today, at the release of the documentary �My Flag My Life�. I am happy that Creation Entertainments has made special efforts to project the career in the Indian Armed Forces as an attractive career option for our youth and I am sure, seeing this documentary will inspire bright young minds to join our Defence services. My greetings to all of you. Since I am in the midst of future leaders of the country, I would like to share with you few thoughts on the Topic �Courage Stimulates Civilizational Growth�. First let me talk about my teacher. Teacher who gives a vision When I see you all, I am reminded of my childhood days when I was studying in 8th class at the age of 13. I had a teacher, Shri Siva Subramania Iyer. He was a great teacher in our school. All of us loved to attend his class and hear him. One day he was teaching about bird�s flight. He drew a diagram of a bird on the blackboard depicting the wings, tail and the body structure with the head. He explained how the birds create the lift and fly. He also explained to us how they change direction while flying. Nearly for 25 minutes he gave the lecture with various information such as lift, drag, how the birds fly in a formation of 10, 20 or 30. At the end of the class, he wanted to know whether we understood how the birds fly. I said, I did not understand how the birds fly. When I said this, the teacher asked the other students whether they understood or not. Many students said that they also did not understand. He did not get upset by our response since he was a committed teacher. Our teacher said that he would take all of us to the sea shore. That evening the whole class was at the sea shore of Rameswaram. We enjoyed the roaring sea waves knocking at the sandy hills in the pleasant evening. Birds were flying with sweet chirping voice. He showed the sea birds in formations of 10 to 20 numbers. We saw the marvelous formations of birds with a purpose and we were all amazed. He showed us the birds and asked us to see that when the birds fly, what they looked like. We saw the wings flapping. He asked us to look at the tail portion with the combination of flapping wings and twisting tail. We noticed closely and found that the birds in that condition flew in the direction they desired. Then he asked us a question, where the engine is and how it is powered. Bird is powered by its own life and the motivation of what it wants. All these things were explained to us within fifteen minutes. We all understood the whole bird dynamics from this practical example. How nice it was? Our teacher was a great teacher; he could give us a theoretical lesson coupled with a live practical example available in nature. This is real teaching. I am sure many of the teachers in schools and colleges will follow this example. For me, it was not merely an understanding of how a bird flies. The bird�s flight entered into me and created a special feeling. From that evening, I thought that my future study has to be with reference to flight and flight systems. I am saying this because my teacher�s teaching and the event that I witnessed decided my future career. Then one evening after the classes, I asked the teacher, �Sir, please tell me, how to progress further in learning all about flight.� He patiently explained to me that I should complete 8th class, and then go to high school, and then I should go to engineering college that may lead to education on flight. If I complete all my education with excellence, I might do something

connected with flight sciences. This advice and the bird flying exercise given by my teacher, really gave me a goal and a mission for my life. When I went to college, I took Physics. When I went to engineering in Madras Institute of Technology, I took Aeronautical Engineering. Thus my life was transformed as a rocket engineer, aerospace engineer and technologist. That one incident of my teacher teaching the lesson, showing the visual live example proved to be a turning point in my life which eventually shaped my profession which has something to do with flying. My ambition to fly was fulfilled when I was in the cockpit of Su-30 MKI. Experience in Sukhoi-30 MKI On 8th June 2006, I flew in a Sukhoi-30 fighter aircraft to make a sortie. The previous night, Wing Commander Ajay Rathore gave me lessons on how to fly. He became my teacher who taught me successfully how to pilot the aircraft as well as handle weapon control system. It was a dream for me since 1958 when I became an engineer, to fly a fighter aircraft. After our strapping on, Sukhoi-30 took off and sore to a height of 25,000 feet flying at a speed of over 1200 kms per hour. Wing Commander Rathore suggested me to turn the Sukhoi to the left and then to the right. I experienced about 3g, of course with a g-suite. I could experience the banking of the Sukhoi to the left and right going up and down before landing. During the sortie I tried to understand various sub-system of the aircraft developed by Indian scientists which have been integrated with this aircraft. I was very happy to see the indigenously built mission computers, radar warning receivers, IFF and display processors in the aircraft. During the sortie, I was shown how to locate the target in the air and on the ground with the help of synthetic aperture radar. The flight lasted for over 36 minutes. I felt the fulfillment of a great aim and long cherished dream of my life. Above all, I realized the leadership qualities of our Air Warriors are engaged in the defence of our national airspace. Similarly, from 2002 to 2007, when I was the Supreme Commander for Armed Forces, I was always keen to know the environment in which our Armed Forces are operating, their state of readiness, their problems and challenges. As a part of this mission, I had visited a number of units of Army and Navy also. The interactions with the Officers and Jawans forced me visit difficult stations. Hence, I specially chose to go to highest point Kumar where our troops are operating at minus 35 degree Celsius and submarine operations in Visakhapatnam coast. Let me share my experiences with you, when I was in Kumar at minus 35 degree Celsius with the soldiers and when I was in the submarine with the sailors and Naval Officers. Valour in Glaciers I landed at KUMAR in Siachen Glacier on 2 April 2004. The post is located at an altitude of 7,000. At that time, it was snowing and the temperature was minus 35 degree centigrade with heavy winds. When I reached the field station, three soldiers � Naik from Karnataka, Williams from West Bengal and Salim from Uttar Pradesh - shook hands with me. As soon as they shook their hands with me, it became Agni that transformed into warmth and penetrated into me. This warmth gave me the confidence that our nation is safe in the hands of the soldiers defending in the difficult environment and terrain at the highest altitude. Extraordinary leadership qualities are required to generate this warmth among the troops in the freezing cold conditions. My rendezvous with Silent Force On 13th February 2006, I had a journey underwater in the naval submarine INS Sindhurakshak. I entered the submarine through the lower lid of the conning tower and descended for about 10 meters. The submarine commenced diving to a depth of about 30 meters from the surface and started cruising. Through a narrow circular

door of one meter diameter, I entered the submarine control room. The crew explained the functioning of the submarine showing the maneuvering operations and buoyancy control methodologies with great enthusiasm. It was a thrilling experience for me to cruise with the Chief of Naval Staff, the young sailors and officers. During the review, the underwater communication system, target identification and launch simulation were shown. This was followed by the firing of torpedo/missile water-shod to simulate an attack, demonstrating the combat capability of our underwater silent force. The target location, signature analysis from the sonar data, torpedo launch and its homing were presented. I realized the complexities involved in under water warfare. I moved on to the weapon storage compartment where the torpedoes are stored and this compartment connects to the front of the submarine where water is filled before launching the torpedoes. Then I moved on through various compartments to the rear part of the submarine to see the diesel engine based propulsion system and the electric drives. I met 90 officers and sailors in the vessel working like busy bees. Their job is not easy but they feel proud in their challenging mission. We went to a small working room where seven people could be accommodated. We had a delicious vegetarian lunch. I was given a presentation on the future of Submarine building plans for the next 30 years. The submarine, after completing its underwater journey for three hours was ready to surface. The procedure started and the vessel came to the surface and moved in the direction of the shore. I climbed up through the ladder of the conning tower. I saw the land and the ocean back. What a memorable underwater journey. Our Navy is indeed multi-dimensional - under water, on the water and above water. The high morale shown by the sailors and the officers in the submarine is commendable. A story of valour : Field Marshal S.H.F.J. Manekshaw During World War II, the young officer Manekshaw was leading a counter-offensive against the invading Japanese Army in Burma. As he charged forward with his men, a Japanese soldier suddenly emerged from the bushes and fired at him, wounding him seriously in the stomach. Fortunately, Major General D.T. Cowan spotted Manekshaw holding on to life and was aware of his valour in face of stiff resistance from the Japanese. Fearing the worst, Major General Cowan quickly pinned his own Military Cross ribbon on to Manekshaw saying, "A dead person cannot be awarded a Military Cross." Later in 1971 General Manekshaw, prepared our Army for a well-planned and a well executed operation against Pakistan leading to the creation of Bangladesh. As Chairman of Chiefs of Staff Committee, he welded the Army, Navy and Air Force into a well-knit team. He ensured the taking over of 90,000 Pakistan POWs, thereby paving the way for favourable conditions for negotiations. Nation gratefully recognizes Manekshaw with the title �Field Marshal of the Indian Army.� Conclusion Following the foots steps of Field Marshal Manekshaw, Lieutenant Arun Khetarpal made supreme sacrifice in the face of enemy and his determination to hold his position gallantly without abandoning the post has become a historical event of Indian Army. He is definitely a role model for all the youth of the nation. I recall a poem which I composed on 15th August 2005 when I was paying the tributes at the Amar Jawan Jyoti. Let me share with you my feelings which I had, while saluting such courageous soldiers who fought for our nation. Amar Jawan Jyoti Lights our heart with courage Radiates to the nation, devotion Spread the message of sacrifice

Ignites confidence upon our nation Courage to defend the nation, courage to innovate, courage to invent and courage to overcome the sufferings and to succeed, are indeed the traits that led to the growth of human civilization. I am sure, all of you will have the courage to overcome all the problems and succeed in your designated mission in whatever profession you choose. My best wishes to all of you for success in everyone of your endevour. May God bless you. Oath for the Youth 1. I will have a goal and work hard to achieve that goal. I realize that small aim is a crime. 2. I will work with integrity and succeed with integrity. 3. I will be a good member of my family, a good member of the society, a good member of the nation and a good member of the world. 4. I will always try to save or better someone's life, without any discrimination of caste, creed, language religion or state. Wherever I am, a thought will always come to my mind. That is �What can I give?� 5. I will always protect and enhance the dignity of every human life without any bias. 6. I will always remember the importance of time. My motto will be �Let not my winged days, be spent in vain�. 7. I will always work for clean planet Earth and clean energy. 8. As a youth of my nation, I will work and work with courage to achieve success in all my tasks and enjoy the success of others. 9. I am as young as my faith and as old as my doubt. Hence, I will light up then, the lamp of faith in my heart. 10. My National Flag flies in my heart and I will bring glory to my nation. www.abdulkalam.com Top